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If a box needs to be checked on my driver’s license, it would be for thriftiness.
I’m bold like that.
As someone who chronically makes less than average, which the interwebs suggests is $67,000, I’m compelled to be a saver more than a grower.
Growing my wages involves a different job or another job. Why do that when it took years (years!) to turn a dream job into my day job. I’d rather practice contentment and not look for the greener grass that ends up being a turf lawn.
It always looks nice until I walk around barefoot on plastic shards.
Saving 3k is easier than earning 3k.
Since another or different job is out of the question, my default focus is ways to save.
I save money by not spending it. Instead of labeling it as big and little sacrifices, I look at it as protecting my values which include nature, adventure, and happiness.
I save money for those areas and everything else gets squeezed until it squeaks.
Money is squeeze away from:
Buying brand new clothes;
Dying my hair and painting my nails;
Avoiding full-price items similar to how I avoid car accidents (it’s an accident for my wallet);
From groceries to goods, I use a list and stick to it;
Maximizing work bennies from retirement contributions to leave;
I hail the budget for its mighty ways to give me all the deets of how I spend; and
Keep reoccurring expenses low.
On its own, each habit is a splash of water. When collected and funneled towards one goal, it becomes the Niagara complete with boat tours and complementary ponchos.
There is always a season for a reason.
As a goal digger, I know the best way to achieve a goal is to have a reason before the goal gets going.
Having a reason to save 3k is how I leverage good days over bad.
Before I save, the first thing I do is craft a reason. A reason as to why I’m saying no to a dinner out. A reason why I delay a want and whim on Amazon. And why I’m avoiding my favorite stores similar to how I avoid screaming toddlers that careen my way, by avoiding eye contact while heading in the opposite direction.
Recently, I heard 3 reasons that a human could needed $3,000. I claim only one as my own. The other 2 were ones that people shared directly or indirectly with me.
Sharing is caring, friends.
One reason to save $3000: A medical mishap.
Toby is a delightful sort of dog. He is a sweet boy whose past is riddled with hardship. He grew up in a rough neighborhood, roaming the streets for food.
Since he experienced food scarcity as a pup, he will always have a hole that can never be filled. Not in his heart, but in his stomach.
I’ve dog sat for this pup and he was a good dog; he didn’t pee on floors, howl at midnight, or scratch at closed doors.
He was a food thief.
As someone who actively feeds a compost bin, I have no food smells in my trash. So, he didn’t demolish the rubbish bin when it was left unattended. I was wise to put away any tasty treats, even though my counter was higher than his head. What I failed to do, was warn others.
I knew of his food scarcity past, other humans did not.
One time, I let Toby explore my workspace. As he roamed around as an unleashed dog does, I chatted with my coworkers. Toby had free reign and while my back was turned, and my mind elsewhere, he spied a donut. It was eye-level for the clever pup and disappeared faster than free Rice Krispy treats in the break room.
I. Was. Mortified.
I apologized for Toby’s bad manners and mentally blasted myself for his behavior.
Luckily, it was a one and done kind of donut moment.
However, his owner, had multiple instances of this behavior. Entire muffins, still in plastic packages have been scarfed. Entire pork chops, bones and all, were consumed. Then there are the many bags of trash that have been strewn and devoured by a cute face with a soul that whines like a ravenous werewolf.
Enough that Toby has come with an expensive price tag: 3k worth of vet bills.
Another reason to save $3000: 2 months of daycare.
As an American, kids are expensive. Unlike a mortgage that has a payment plan and refining optiosn, the kid payment plan is doled out with a lifetime of surprises.
I don’t have kids, but Mr. BuLL works with a few folks who do.
One of their commiserations as of late was expensive daycare. In 2 months they spend 3k on daycare. For Mr. BuLL and me, that’s a 2-month mortgage payment.
Tiny humans have big expenses.
The best reason to save $3000 (100% biased): An 8-day trip to Iceland.
Everyone has their financial priorities, that’s the personal in personal finances. There are things that I value more than others.
I value adventures, so that’s what I save for. I save for financial flexibility and go on adventures to local and global places.
For me, it’s easy to save 3k for a trip to Iceland. I’m happy to leverage my savings towards glorious waterfalls, black sand beaches, and colorful lights that dance at night.
The best reason to save $3000 is a personal reason.
Humans are amazing creatures. We are capable of overcoming insurmountable odds. It’s not something we do every day. Instead, we save it for special occasions like weddings, holidays, and medical emergencies.
Between our brains and bodies, we’ve accomplished things that are frequently spouted as impossible, from space flight to wireless communications.
Whichever the reason for saving 3k, as long as it’s personal, it’s probable. Even the word impossible spells the belief, Im possible.